30 Rock - (201) & The Office (402)

Category: , , , By Rev/Views

I've kind of held back from reviewing several shows that i'm watching (House M.D., Prison Break and Heroes) partly because I'm interested in seeing where they're going before I start typing about it and partly because I keep forgetting to watch Heroes.

I know! Sacrilegious and scandalous! But I've not even watched the second episode yet. Tuesday I found myself thinking "I know there's a show I watch on Mondays. But I already watched Prison Break so what was it?"
And it's only today that I realised I missed Heroes. I shan't be able to catch up on it till tomorrow evening. Tut, tut.

Anyhow, onto last nights offerings.

[This post may contain spoilers]

30 Rock - Seinfeld Vision
I picked up watching 30 Rock when I realised that Studio 60 wasn't going to make the distance *cry*. While the two shows have a very different tone, there are some parallels. Enough that I was willing to give 30 Rock a chance to grow on me. The previous season was good, but not amazing. It felt like it was missing that final bit of pazzaz to push it over the top. Last night it got it, Seinfeld Vision had that little something extra.

Problem is, I think that this extra is because Jerry Seinfeld was on the show. The various clips of him being digitally inserted into other shows was hilarious. Every moment with Jerry on screen was fantastic, there was a moment where I found myself wishing it would turn out he'd join the cast permanently. But it's maybe for the best that didn't happen as they'd need to re-write the dynamics of the show too much.

Alec Baldwin was on blistering form as Jack, the gusto with which he reeled of his 'summer hits' was so superb that I just couldn't stop laughing at 'Milf Island'. I still don't really like Tracy Jordan (played by Tracy Morgan), he's just so far out there and crazy that I find it difficult to tolerate him on screen. I guess maybe he's supposed to be like Chris Tucker, who makes a living out of being crazy and loud. But I just don't find it funny. That said, the scenes between Kenneth and Tracy - with Kenneth acting as his 'office wife' were very good. So I don't know, the jury's out on him I guess.

Very solid start to the season, and I'm looking forward to watching the rest of the episodes.

Oh, it also helps that I think Tina Fey is hot.


The Office - 402 - Dunder Mifflin Infinity
Speaking of characters I find attactive, we're onto 'The Office' and, you should have guessed it. Pam. The relationship between Jim and Pam is growing and I find it very sweet and endearing. There's something about the show I find really lovely. While many of the characters are an ass one way or the other I still like them. Flaws and all.
Jim is still my firm favourite, he's very 'everyman' and also seems to take on the position of the viewer in many situations. I find his looks punctuate situations and really add to the comedy. Out of all the characters, he's the one most likely to look directly at the camera outside of interviews.

Anyway, while the relationship between Pam and Jim strengthens (I'm going to be so bummed out when they break up - and you know the writers will do it at some point...) the relationship between Dwight and Angela shatters after Angela can't forgive Dwight for freezing Sprinkles the cat to death. To be honest, I can't really blame her - it's probably the worst thing he's done by a long stretch. Dwight's poor handling of the situation taints his attempts to assist Michael in winning back some companies who stopped ordering.
Michael and Jan's relationship doesn't look solid either. While it's never been solid, it's Michael's complete inability to notice any potential problems that's going to hurt him most of all. In truth I'm not sure what Jan is doing, both with him and in general. She seems to just be going through a bout of depression. Something Michael would of course miss and then make a mess of helping her through it.

The episode was another 40min episode, which is interesting. I guess they've moved to a 40 min format this year. Which is both a bold move and a clever one, it could have gone horribly wrong if they got the pacing wrong or didn't have enough material. But instead I think they've hit a great balance that works. I hardly noticed the time passing. 40 mins suits 'The Office'.


I also think a 40 min format might suit 30 Rock.


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